In a delightful matter of life imitating art, the

Daily News

has learned that former Eagle Vince Papale is quietly growing his family some deep South Philly roots.

As has been noted, the movie "Invincible" took more than a few liberties with his actual past, relocating the Delaware County-bred Papale to a South Philadelphia rowhouse, for example, and hooking him up with a football-savvy bartender.

In reality, his love interest and wife is a former USA World gymnast and current Realtor, the market-savvy Janet Cantwell-Papale. And that's where South Philly comes in.

Sensing a good investment opportunity, the Papales have bought a handful of properties in the neighborhood during past few years, including one apartment building apiece for their children, 13-year-old Gabriella and 10-year-old Vincenzo - "You can call him Mini Vinnie," Cantwell-Papale says - to help fund their college tuition. Vince and Janet have their eyes on one of the buildings as a place to live after their current South Jersey nest is empty.

"We love South Philly. We believe in the city," she said. "We believe in real estate." *